Man Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison for Cambridge Arson - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Man Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison for Cambridge Arson

Posted: Updated:
Pernell Clanton, 26 Pernell Clanton, 26
(Photo:WBOC) (Photo:WBOC)

CAMBRIDGE, Md.- Almost four years ago on Race Street in Cambridge, an apartment building went up in flames.  People were jumping from second floor windows onto mattresses below to escape from the fire.  Earlier this year, a man was at long last arrested and charged with setting that fire.  That man has been sentenced, and will be spending the next several decades behind bars.

Pernell Clanton is 26 now, but at the age of 22 he set a fire that drove 22 people from their home on the 500 block of Race Street just over a week before Christmas in 2012.  It's an image burned into the memories of the firefighters who were out there that night.

"They were jumping and the people underneath were trying to catch or help.  One lady I think broke both her legs when she jumped out.  But we were really blessed that nobody was killed in that fire," said Ricky Travers, one of the firefighters on the scene that night.

The Dorchester State's Attorney's Office says Clanton had a previous dispute with someone he believed was in the building, and tried to scare the person by setting the fire.  Clanton's intended target was not in the building.  But Tevin Ennels was.  He was one of the people who had to jump from that second floor.

"I opened the door up and saw all this smoke.  After I saw all the smoke, I closed the door.  We threw my mattress out the window, and after that we started jumping out the window," said Ennels.

People in Cambridge thought after close to four years, the man who set the fire would never be caught.

"My man, he did a good job of hiding and running, I'll say that.  I didn't think they would catch him, but like they say, justice is what it is," said Kevin Stallings.

State's Attorney Bill Jones says the case had run cold, but a new tip surfaced that led to the arrest and conviction.

"Investigators from the fire marshal's office had the opportunity to follow up on that lead, which lead to this defendant, who fortunately for us also then cooperated with the investigation and gave us the evidence we needed to get the conviction we got this week," said Jones.

Clanton will be going to prison for 40 years, but local say no amount of time will erase the memory of that night.

Clanton pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree arson and nine counts of first=degree assault.  He was sentenced to 255 years in prison, with 215 suspended, leaving 40 active years of prison time.  He will be eligible for parole after 20 years, and when released will be on supervised probation for five years, and will have no contact with the victims, and will will receive mental health and abuse treatments.

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Delaware State Police Seek Help in Identifying Bank Robbery Suspect

    Delaware State Police Seek Help in Identifying Bank Robbery Suspect

    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:25 PM EDT2018-09-22 19:25:26 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:25 PM EDT2018-09-22 19:25:26 GMT
    Suspect WantedSuspect Wanted
    Suspect WantedSuspect Wanted
    NEWARK, Del.- The Delaware State Police are asking the public for assistance in identifying a bank robbery suspect.More
    NEWARK, Del.- The Delaware State Police are asking the public for assistance in identifying a bank robbery suspect.

    More
  • Rehoboth Considers Potential Parking Solutions

    Rehoboth Considers Potential Parking Solutions

    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:11 AM EDT2018-09-22 07:11:01 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:16 AM EDT2018-09-22 07:16:27 GMT
    Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)
    Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)
    Some in Rehoboth Beach say they're fed up with searching for parking in prime locations--like along Rehoboth Avenue. Today the city's parking advisory committee presented those solutions to the Board of Commissioners.More
    Some in Rehoboth Beach say they're fed up with searching for parking in prime locations--like along Rehoboth Avenue. Today the city's parking advisory committee presented those solutions to the Board of Commissioners. More
  • Investigation Finds Maryland Culpable in Death of Player

    Investigation Finds Maryland Culpable in Death of Player

    Saturday, September 22 2018 12:08 AM EDT2018-09-22 04:08:32 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 12:08 AM EDT2018-09-22 04:08:32 GMT
    An independent investigation into the death of University of Maryland football player Jordan McNair has determined that trainers on the scene did not follow proper procedures after he collapsed on the field.More
    An independent investigation into the death of University of Maryland football player Jordan McNair has determined that trainers on the scene did not follow proper procedures after he collapsed on the field.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Delaware State Police Seek Help in Identifying Bank Robbery Suspect

    Delaware State Police Seek Help in Identifying Bank Robbery Suspect

    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:25 PM EDT2018-09-22 19:25:26 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:25 PM EDT2018-09-22 19:25:26 GMT
    Suspect WantedSuspect Wanted
    Suspect WantedSuspect Wanted
    NEWARK, Del.- The Delaware State Police are asking the public for assistance in identifying a bank robbery suspect.More
    NEWARK, Del.- The Delaware State Police are asking the public for assistance in identifying a bank robbery suspect.

    More
  • Rehoboth Considers Potential Parking Solutions

    Rehoboth Considers Potential Parking Solutions

    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:11 AM EDT2018-09-22 07:11:01 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 3:16 AM EDT2018-09-22 07:16:27 GMT
    Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)
    Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)Downtown Rehoboth Beach (Photo: WBOC)
    Some in Rehoboth Beach say they're fed up with searching for parking in prime locations--like along Rehoboth Avenue. Today the city's parking advisory committee presented those solutions to the Board of Commissioners.More
    Some in Rehoboth Beach say they're fed up with searching for parking in prime locations--like along Rehoboth Avenue. Today the city's parking advisory committee presented those solutions to the Board of Commissioners. More
  • Kent County Man Shot While in His Yard

    Kent County Man Shot While in His Yard

    Friday, September 21 2018 6:20 PM EDT2018-09-21 22:20:00 GMT
    Friday, September 21 2018 6:23 PM EDT2018-09-21 22:23:48 GMT
    Credit: WBOCCredit: WBOC
    Credit: WBOCCredit: WBOC
    Delaware State Police are investigating a incident that occurred on September 20, where a man from Magnolia, Delaware was shot while trying to bring his dog inside.More
    Delaware State Police are investigating a incident that occurred on September 20, where a man from Magnolia, Delaware was shot while trying to bring his dog inside. More
  • Most Popular VideosMost Popular VideosMore>>

  • Whale Skull Recovered from Pickering Beach in Kent County

    Whale Skull Recovered from Pickering Beach in Kent County

    The skull of a deceased juvenile whale that washed up along the Kent County coast last year was recovered on Friday at Pickering Beach by staffers with the Delaware Museum of Natural History.

    The whale initially turned up at Port Mahon but was moved to Pickering Beach by the State of Delaware to naturally decompose into the bones that remain on the beach.

    More

    The skull of a deceased juvenile whale that washed up along the Kent County coast last year was recovered on Friday at Pickering Beach by staffers with the Delaware Museum of Natural History.

    The whale initially turned up at Port Mahon but was moved to Pickering Beach by the State of Delaware to naturally decompose into the bones that remain on the beach.

    More
  • Rehoboth Considers Potential Parking Solutions

    Rehoboth Considers Potential Parking Solutions

    Some in Rehoboth Beach say they're fed up with searching for parking in prime locations--like along Rehoboth Avenue.

    Now--the city is exploring options to provide solutions to the problem. Today the city's parking advisory committee presented those solutions to the Board of Commissioners.  

    Among some of the explored topics were extending the meter season in the city, as well as hiking up the price of metered parking in popular areas.

    More

    Some in Rehoboth Beach say they're fed up with searching for parking in prime locations--like along Rehoboth Avenue.

    Now--the city is exploring options to provide solutions to the problem. Today the city's parking advisory committee presented those solutions to the Board of Commissioners.  

    Among some of the explored topics were extending the meter season in the city, as well as hiking up the price of metered parking in popular areas.

    More
  • Sussex County Recovering Addict Reflects

    Sussex County Recovering Addict Reflects

    The Sussex County Health Coalition recently jumped on the purple band wagon to raise awareness for substance abuse. 

    In light of that campaign on local man, Bruce Ricketts, is speaking out about his journey through addiction in hopes of it becoming another person's inspiration. 

    Bruce lives with 11 other people in an Oxford house that all share similar struggles. The goal in the house is to give recovering addicts a safe place to rebuild their lives.

    More

    The Sussex County Health Coalition recently jumped on the purple band wagon to raise awareness for substance abuse. 

    In light of that campaign on local man, Bruce Ricketts, is speaking out about his journey through addiction in hopes of it becoming another person's inspiration. 

    Bruce lives with 11 other people in an Oxford house that all share similar struggles. The goal in the house is to give recovering addicts a safe place to rebuild their lives.

    More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices